So I'm trying to configure the resolution of my CentOS 6.5 virtualbox. Here are the steps I have taken:

Installed guest additions
Changed virtualbox preferences > Display > Maximum Guest Screen Size: Hint (Width 1920, height 1080)
Restarted VirtualBox System > Preferences > Display only shows 1024x768 and lower as possible resolutions.

I had also tried editing /etc/X11/xorg.conf to include the following:

Section "Screen" Depth 24 SubSection "Display" Depth 24 Modes "1920x1080" EndSubSection EndSection

However changing this caused box to crash to a black window with "CentOS 6.5" printed. It would let me type but would not let me run commands; hitting enter returned a newline but no actions. There was no prompt.

I've also seen instructions to run a command changing the MaxGuestOSResolution (or something) in my host terminal, but I'm hosting on windows so that isn't an option.

Is there something I'm overlooking? I've done a lot of google searching but nothing has given me the option to increase the resolution. I've also taken a couple steps that I didn't list here, but I can't remember them all.

Thanks in advance.

  • Virtualbox guest additions installed too? There's a graphics driver attached to that.
    – Nathan C
    May 6, 2014 at 15:18
  • @NathanC how do I manipulate that driver? I haven't seen any settings that would help me but I might be looking in the wrong places. May 6, 2014 at 15:20
  • Once you install the actual extensions (using the menu) and reboot the VM, they'll automatically be enabled. Also make sure you're allocating enough video memory to the VM for a high resolution (I normally max it out unless it's a server).
    – Nathan C
    May 6, 2014 at 15:20
  • @NathanC I have allocated 128mb for the vm video memory, which is the max vbox allowed. And I have rebooted the VM since installing vbox guest additions, but like I said it did not give me any more options for resolution. Is there somewhere for me to check the driver settings? I'm unfamiliar with CentOS. May 6, 2014 at 15:23
  • It sounds like you may be out of luck ...CentOS 6.x doesn't like the drivers that come with virtualbox it seems.
    – Nathan C
    May 6, 2014 at 15:25

3 Answers 3


More steps to add 1920x1080 Screen resolution. Just make sure that you "reboot" after you uncomment X11's xorg.conf file before you run the automated scripts further down below.

sudo mv /etc/X11/xorg.conf /etc/X11/xorg.conf.unused

You can use the following scripts. Also credit to Adam Prax's Answer How to change resolution of CentOS 6.5 Resolution on virtualbox (Host: Win7)

Diplay_Name=`xrandr | grep connected | cut -d' ' -f1`
Display_Spec=`cvt 1920 1080 | grep Modeline | cut -d' ' -f2 |cut -d '"' -f2`
Display_Params=`cvt 1920 1080 | grep Modeline | cut -d' ' -f2-18`
xrandr --newmode $Display_Params
xrandr --addmode $Diplay_Name $Display_Spec
xrandr --output $Diplay_Name --mode $Display_Spec

You should have something commands execution like below.

xrandr --newmode "1920x1080_60.00"  173.00  1920 2048 2248 2576  1080 1083 1088 1120 -hsync +vsync 
xrandr --addmode VGA-0 1920x1080_60.00 
xrandr --output VGA-0 --mode 1920x1080_60.00

Then, you can use VirtualBox’s “View -> Auto-resize Guest Display” to let VirtualBox automatic resize work for you.


For me (CentOS 7 on VirtualBox 4.3.10 with Guest Additions 4.3.18), the answer provided by Ray Sheu nearly worked.

I only had to change the definition of Display_Params to also remove the double quotes around the mode name:

Display_Params=`cvt 1920 1080 | grep Modeline | cut -d' ' -f2-18 | sed s/'"'//g`

I also had set the screen size hint of 1920x1080 as described in the answer by Devon Parsons, but that alone did not help. I did not check out whether that was necessary at all.


A co-worked found a solution to this problem. It would be hard to pinpoint all the environment settings changed since I first got the VM, but hopefully this will be enough:

  1. Have guest additions installed (for either Virtualbox or VMware, whatever you're using).
  2. DELETE the file /etc/X11/xorg.conf (or to be safer, mv it to /etc/X11/xorg.conf.unused or something)

This opened up a huge range of resolutions for me, and among them 1920 x 1080. Hopefully this helps other people too.


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